Film - reviews, previews and interviews
Interview Rory Girvan
Louise Crowther talks Stella, Robert De Niro and bread and butter with Leeds… (Read more...)
Film Review Shame
Leeds International Film Festival 2011 Closing Gala, Leeds Town Hall, 18th November. Dir.… (Read more...)
Feature Juan of the Dead
Cuba's first independent film since Castro came to power had its UK premiere… (Read more...)
Interview The Muppets
They’re baaaaack and variety has never been so Velcro’d... John Mosby meets The Muppets
It isn’t easy being green, or so we’re told, but Kermit the frog seems to be doing fine. He’s holding court at a rather swankier pad then the usual ‘lily’ variety, a top-notch London hotel where he’s in town (with porcine paramour, Miss Piggy) to promote the release of his latest film, handily entitled The Muppets.
Amazingly, it’s been over a decade since the last official Muppet movie and yet the velcro’d variety team are as fondly remembered as ever. More than one generation grew up on the Muppets – either through the famous TV show or the various films…
DVD Review The British Guide to Showing Off
UK 2012. Cert 15. 97 mins. Dir: Jes Benstock. Cast: Brian Eno, Andrew Logan, Richard O’Brien, Grayson Perry, Zandra Rhodes
Following the life and loves of exuberant sculptor and artist Andrew Logan, The British Guide to Showing Off is no ordinary biographical documentary. Through a montage of archive footage, animations, photographs and interviews with friends and former participants, itcharts Logan’s early life and career to consider how these experiences influenced his creation of the “socially revolutionary” Alternative Miss World competition.
The AMV, as it is more commonly known, is a subcultural beauty pageant that celebrates non-conformity, self-expression and all things eccentric, and is nowadays renowned the world over as a quintessentially British tradition. Logan believes “there is a strain in…
Interview Antonio Banderas
John Mosby meets the Spanish actor who with his new film Puss In Boots is certainly feline groovy (sorry)
There’s little doubt that Antonio Banderas is one of the members of that elite testosterone-fuelled movie club in which women want to be with him and men want to go out for a drink with him. The Spanish actor made his breakthrough in such international action-outings such as Desperado, Once Upon a Time in Mexico and Assassins but has branched out into diverse projects such as the Spy Kids franchise and much darker material such as The Skin I Live In.
Puss in Boots sees him planted, once again, in family viewing terrain. Puss in Boots was the scene-stealing character…
Audience favourites and more announced as the festival draws to a close
The award winners of the 25th Leeds International Film Festival have today been announced. LIFF, which has been pronounced eligible to enter the Academy Awards process of the 2013 Oscars, declared the winners of the 10 sought-after awards at the close of this year’s festival.
THE GOLDEN OWL AWARD in Official Selection was presented to 22nd May, directed by Koen Mortier. The Golden Owl jury, made up of Laurence Boyce, Renata Clark and Tony Jones, believes the film deserves a chance at UK distribution. The jury said: “The film is a powerful and evocative tale of guilt and…
DVD Review Yves Saint Laurent: L'Amour Fou
Dir. Pierre Thoretton, France, 2011
The translation for L’Amour Fou is ‘crazy love’, a perhaps reductive choice of title to describe the 40-year-long relationship between the late Yves Saint Laurent and his partner Pierre Bergé. The film opens with the designer’s 2002 press conference in which he declares his retirement from the fashion industry, followed suddenly by Bergé‘s profound eulogy at his partner’s funeral six years later. Following Bergé on the run-up to the grand auctioning off of the pair’s extensive art collections in 2009 - we see work by Picasso, Matisse and Warhol’s portraits of Saint Laurent himself - the documentary becomes as thought-provoking…
Film Review Involuntary
Dir. Ruben Östlund. Sweden, 2011
Perhaps one of the most stylistically interesting films at this year’s Leeds International Film Festival, Involuntary is a window into the lives of five groups of unrelated, unconnected people. From the coach driver who, after an incident of accidental vandalism, refuses to drive his passengers any further without a confession to the grandfather who suffers a firework-related eye injury, each narrative bubble has an emerging moral dilemma for us to consider.
The acting is consistent, naturalistic and honest, to the point where the film very nearly bleeds into voyeuristic territory. The camera angles are odd and inventive (sometimes behind a…
Film Review Close Encounters of the Third Kind
Dir. Stephen Spielberg, USA, 1977
Part of the ‘Alien Encounters at Leeds Town Hall’ selection for the Leeds International Film Festival, Close Encounters of the Third Kind was brought back to the big screen on Sunday 13th November.
With its booming, fittingly dramatic score by John Williams, this science-fiction classic has lost none of its sparkle. It stands apart from many movies in the alien invasion genre in its cuddly, open-armed position on beings from another world. There’s an optimistically peaceful note to the story and the sense of wonder supersedes terror even in the moments of potential alien threat.
Contemporaneous with George Lucas’s…